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bravo-05
03-13-2017, 07:11 AM
hi, i purchased my first uke online since the ones in my area didnt interest me. I bought a kala ka spalted maple tenor with eq.

when i received it there were 3 areas that had "finish cracks" on the top of the uke. (the cracks dont go through)

my question is if these finish cracks affect the uke and will generally get worse or not. It is obvious it was due to a humidity issue which I will take care of asap.

should i keep it or not? i have to add that they upgraded me for free to the EQ version with tuner because they had no more regular ones in stock. and now the EQ ones are out of stock as well.

cml
03-13-2017, 07:27 AM
Only you can decide.

bravo-05
03-13-2017, 07:31 AM
yes i realize that....i wanted to know more about the finishing cracks....if they will cause problems down the road or are they purely aesthetic problems...thx

stevepetergal
03-13-2017, 07:35 AM
My opinion:
By all means, return it post haste. It's new and, even if it doesn't get worse, (which it will) it will not get better and will never even look new. Get your money back if they don't have a replacement you want.

JackLuis
03-13-2017, 07:54 AM
I vote to return it too. For what you paid you should get a pristine instrument. That they gave you the eq to get rid of it is an indication that they didn't want to have to wholesale it because of the cracks.

You could wait until they have another Kala in stock, or you could buy a Caramel Tenor for ~$65 and have something to play while you wait for your Kala.

bonesigh
03-13-2017, 09:30 AM
Return it!

RichM
03-13-2017, 09:42 AM
If you got a screaming deal that you could never reproduce, consider keeping it. Finish cracks are generally cosmetic and unlikely to affect the tone of the instrument. Nobody can guarantee you that they won't get worse; it depends on the reason the finish cracked in the first place. I own a beautiful uke with a lot of finish crazing; it still sounds great, and the price was adjusted for the defects. I feel like I got a bargain.

However, given that this is a standard model, I personally would probably send it back. A new instrument should not have defects, unless it was identified as a "Second" or a "blem."

Croaky Keith
03-13-2017, 09:45 AM
If it has cracks, then it is not of 'merchantable quality', & is definitely sub standard, return it & get your money back, they obviously don't look after their stock.

spookelele
03-13-2017, 09:48 AM
I never really understand why people think about keeping something they don't like.
If there's something wrong with it, return it.

sam13
03-13-2017, 09:52 AM
I never really understand why people think about keeping something they don't like.
If there's something wrong with it, return it.

I agree. It doesn't sound like it was well taken care of ... or the vendor new about it and decided to sell it anyways.

Send it back. Don't even think about it.

hendulele
03-13-2017, 10:36 AM
Spalted maple has an uneven finish, so you might see if humidifying the uke will help. If the cracks are more than surface blemishes, of course, a return would be in order. As cml said, it's your call.

bravo-05
03-13-2017, 10:39 AM
thanks for the comments. the only reason i am considering keeping it is because it is hard to see due to the spalted maple finish. i can only feel it when using my nail. plus i got it upgraded. if finish cracks dont affect the integrity of the instrument i might consider keeping it.

1931jim
03-13-2017, 11:11 AM
thanks for the comments. the only reason i am considering keeping it is because it is hard to see due to the spalted maple finish. i can only feel it when using my nail. plus i got it upgraded. if finish cracks dont affect the integrity of the instrument i might consider keeping it.
Welcome to the UU family.
"""I might consider keeping it""" If the finish bothers you, make it a satin finish.
Take off the strings and hardware. With your brain turned on, gently rub the finish that is offending you, with a razor blade for a Few hours and then 600 grit until you are satisfied with your handiwork. Be sure to do all the instrument, front and back. No sloppy shortcuts here among the family is tolerated. A gentle rub on and off with lemon oil when you are finished, now you have a new satin finish treasure.
Don't forget the fret board also with the lemon oil on and off. Then set up the action and the saddle to your new exacting quality standards which you have set for your ukulele adventures.

bravo-05
03-13-2017, 03:59 PM
Welcome to the UU family.
"""I might consider keeping it""" If the finish bothers you, make it a satin finish.
Take off the strings and hardware. With your brain turned on, gently rub the finish that is offending you, with a razor blade for a Few hours and then 600 grit until you are satisfied with your handiwork. Be sure to do all the instrument, front and back. No sloppy shortcuts here among the family is tolerated. A gentle rub on and off with lemon oil when you are finished, now you have a new satin finish treasure.
Don't forget the fret board also with the lemon oil on and off. Then set up the action and the saddle to your new exacting quality standards which you have set for your ukulele adventures.

It is already a satin finish. Here are the cracks 984919849298493

brimmer
03-13-2017, 04:04 PM
I would return it. Those little cracks will drive you crazy.

Mivo
03-13-2017, 05:47 PM
To me, this looks like it's deeper than just the finish.

Debussychopin
03-13-2017, 06:05 PM
It is like something impacted it sharply at some points and bluntly at another. To my eye it looks stable, but I agree it is more than just finish.

I would keep if the purchase was with disclosure of it and at a deep discount.
Return it if it wasn't.

kohanmike
03-13-2017, 06:09 PM
I agree, those are not surface cracks, they are in the wood. Return it with a complaint that they sold you a damaged instrument.

bunnyf
03-13-2017, 06:14 PM
Absolutely would not accept cracks on a new instrument. Not even discounted. An older instrument with some mojo would be a different story.

bunnyf
03-13-2017, 06:18 PM
Looking at pix. NO way would I keep it and as Mivo said, those cracks look deeper than just surface.

Kayak Jim
03-13-2017, 06:41 PM
Those aren't finish cracks and may be a defect characteristic of spalted (i.e., rotten) wood. As this is a laminate uke I doubt poor humidity control had anything to do with it. It should have been sold as "B stock" with the price and the buyer's expectations set accordingly.

UkerDanno
03-13-2017, 07:18 PM
Yeah, those aren't finish cracks, that's bad wood! Unless they offer you really nice compensation I would definitely send it back! Nice, being a total investment well under $100.

70sSanO
03-13-2017, 10:55 PM
Because it is laminate, there is probably less chance that it will crack completely through...and also less likely that it is a humidity problem. It probably bothers you enough to ask the question, and as the newness wears off, you'll still have those defects, so that might be your best guide. Unless it played and sounded far beyond your expectations, I would send it back.

John

1931jim
03-14-2017, 04:24 AM
It is already a satin finish. Here are the cracks 984919849298493

Thank you for the pictures. I would definitely return this ukulele. I thought they were finish cracks and not imperfections in the top laminate.

rubykey
03-14-2017, 09:38 AM
It's a defect. That might be why you got the"upgrade." With all the ukuleke products on the market I'm sure you can find something else you would like. This is a bad way to start your ukulele Journey. Unless you can get it for half price, what could be a good reason to keep a defective product?

TheCraftedCow
03-14-2017, 03:33 PM
Can you put a light and a mirror inside to see if the crack goes completely through the wood? There are several ways to make the outside crack disappear and not harm the sound of the instrument.

bravo-05
03-14-2017, 04:48 PM
Can you put a light and a mirror inside to see if the crack goes completely through the wood? There are several ways to make the outside crack disappear and not harm the sound of the instrument.

It does not go all the way through

bikemech
03-14-2017, 05:55 PM
I vote for returning the ukulele. Why settle for something you are not happy with?

bravo-05
03-15-2017, 07:49 AM
ok made up my mind (thanks for all the input)...it is going back.

Here in Canada there are very few reasonably priced Kalas left.

I was thinking between the Ka-TEM or even the Luna Tattoo Tenor. Are there any others around that 200$ price point that you guys would suggest over these two?

bikemech
03-15-2017, 05:17 PM
You are probably very frustrated at this point. You are a new ukulele player and you have to send your first (your one and only uke) back to the store!! Argh....

You need an instrument to play. If there is truly nothing you can get locally, the general consensus will be that you should buy from Mim, or Hawaii Music, or Uke Republic. You will get a ukulele that has had a final set up but you might have to wait a while. You can always go Amazon and have it in two days with an option to return. It might be tempting to order one ukulele from a trusted dealer and while you wait for that to arrive you could, with 2-day shipping, be playing an additional ukulele you purchase from Amazon.

I would go Kala before Luna.

bravo-05
03-17-2017, 10:55 AM
bought the kala ka smht solid mahogany. ;)

bikemech
03-17-2017, 11:48 AM
Have you got it yet? Enjoy. I'm sure you made the right choice.

bravo-05
03-17-2017, 12:02 PM
Have you got it yet? Enjoy. I'm sure you made the right choice.

No just purchased it online

Kayak Jim
03-17-2017, 12:38 PM
A solid wood body is miles better than a laminate with the fanciest top veneer.

bravo-05
03-17-2017, 12:54 PM
A solid wood body is miles better than a laminate with the fanciest top veneer.

I was able to play the smht along with the ziricote laminate and the mahogany blew it out of the water. Such a rich warm tone. The ziricote seemed flat in comparison. Actually i prefered the sound of the ka-tem over the ziricote

Mivo
03-17-2017, 06:30 PM
A solid wood body is miles better than a laminate with the fanciest top veneer.

It depends. The laminates by Kiwaya will leave a lot of solid wood ukes in the dust, both in sound and playability. But they also cost as much as solid ukes.

Kayak Jim
03-18-2017, 05:37 AM
It depends. The laminates by Kiwaya will leave a lot of solid wood ukes in the dust, both in sound and playability. But they also cost as much as solid ukes.

Agreed. I have a Kiwaya laminate and it is awesome- great tone and a neck like butter. But it doesn't fall in the fancy top veneer category, which aims to attract buyers based on looks.

bravo-05
03-18-2017, 05:55 AM
I must admit that my mind was pretty set on buying the ziricote when I walked into the store. But as soon as I played this solid mahogany one I fell in love with the mellow sound and even if the looks did not appeal to me I could not ignore the tones that it gave off

1931jim
03-18-2017, 06:41 AM
I must admit that my mind was pretty set on buying the ziricote when I walked into the store. But as soon as I played this solid mahogany one I fell in love with the mellow sound and even if the looks did not appeal to me I could not ignore the tones that it gave off

A wonderful exercise you went through bravo-05 since you started this thread.
The sound will never be ignored
No matter how much bling is on board.

rubykey
03-18-2017, 09:17 AM
I must admit that my mind was pretty set on buying the ziricote when I walked into the store. But as soon as I played this solid mahogany one I fell in love with the mellow sound and even if the looks did not appeal to me I could not ignore the tones that it gave off

I always fall for the mahogany sound. The wood also has a beauty to it. It's not bling but it's beautiful patterns that to me look like herringbone. And a subtle Shimmer to boot.

May you have many moments of musical Joy.

Croaky Keith
03-18-2017, 09:43 AM
Good choice - I like mahogany, & also cedar, (or spruce), they just have the kind of sound I like. :)

bravo-05
03-19-2017, 02:01 PM
crap...guys dont hate me but im having second thoughts.

here where i live they dont carry Pono. This past weekend i ve been reading reviews on the Mango tenor https://vimeo.com/90172560

i love the projection and brightness.....

i enjoy finger picking but i dont want a "plinky" sound when I strum. I know mahogany is supposed to be warmer but the mango is not far off and delivers in brightness, clarity and volume....

what to do


kala smht or pono mango mgt.....